10 Ways To Protect Older Home Foundations From Water Damage-The Foundation Works

Whether your house has a concrete foundation, a brick foundation, a rock foundation, or NO foundation, water is possibly its worst enemy. Here are 10 steps that homeowners can take to protect home foundations from water damage and extend their working life.

The Foundation Works, a Burbank, California based foundation repair company, just released new research that reveals 10 effective foundation solutions that homeowners can employ to protect the foundations of older homes that may be vulnerable to water damage.

For more information on The Foundation Works, visit their company website at:


Homes constructed around the turn of the 21st century in Southern California often possess the unique characteristics of one-of-a-kind craftsmanship and the nearly lost fine art of custom carpentry. Unfortunately, foundations from the turn of the century era are certainly not one of the highlights.

These older homes are at once both one-of-a-kind works of craftsmanship and from a foundation point of view, antiquated nightmares in terms of what supports everything from the sub-structure on up!

Prior to concrete footings, foundations were traditionally made of brick or river rock depending on availability; prior to that, which would be dating back into the late 1800’s, we find houses with no foundation whatsoever, but instead find homes where the sub-structure is literally built directly onto the grade of the land.

“Whether your house has a concrete foundation, a brick foundation, a rock foundation, or NO foundation, water is possibly its worst enemy!”, said Tom Pelletier, Founder and Owner of The Foundation Works. “The mortar of the river rock foundations visible in these images is failing in large part due to water having leached out its minerals over time. The composition of the mortar, the quality of the sand, the amount of cement added, these are all factors as well, but we find water to be the main culprit when married up to enough time. Knowing that, the more you can do to keep excess water away from whatever type of foundation you have, the longer you can apply these “anti-aging” tips to your foundation!”

Pelletier went on to suggest 10 ways that homeowners can protect home foundations from water damage:

Make sure the ground slopes away from the home foundation

Check for water or pooling near the foundation

Monitor any changes around the property that could affect drainage issues such as neighbors regrading their lot and or adjacent hardscape/ landscape changes bordering the property

If the yard has the advantage of any surface drains, drainage pits, culverts ,sump pumps, rain barrels, or any other means of water capture and removal, be sure to keep these systems clear and functional in order that they may help when heavy flow arrives

If the basement has any provision for water capture and removal, be sure it is in functional condition and kept clear; such systems are often subject to accumulated silt which during the drier months, can “set” in the sump pit and essentially freeze the system. Flushing this out a few times a year is very simple and wise to do

Clean and inspect gutters at least twice per year to make sure they are draining properly and that the termination points are far enough from the structure to prevent adjacent soil saturation too close to the home

Monitor vegetation around the home and trim any plants back such that surface water can freely flow away from the home

Adjust sprinkler systems such that vegetation is healthy, but not over-watered. Also, be sure that sprinkler spray is never directly contacting the building, the spray should not be hitting any part of the structure.

If the home has planter boxes directly adjacent to it, be especially alert that these areas have a way to allow moisture out of them so that it does not accumulate and impact the base siding and or foundation

Above all and aside from a foundation inspection, have a separate drainage specialist conduct a thorough examination of the property to address any of the above or any other potential recipes that may also be present in terms of water causing ill effect.

Residential property owners in Southern California interested in a thorough inspection of their foundations can contact The Foundation Works at 1-877-BOLTDOWN, to get the inspection process started or click on the “Schedule an Inspection” icon on their website.

About The Foundation Works:

The Foundation Works was founded in 2003 and is known for honest, fast and thorough foundation inspections and foundation repair for residential properties in the greater Los Angeles area. The Foundation Works has a 100% record of job completions in every city they work in, stellar customer reviews and a long history of providing detailed inspections and honest prescriptions for each foundation system they service. Additional services include soft-story retrofitting, foundation replacement, earthquake/seismic retrofitting, foundation upgrades, foundation inspections, concrete crack repair, block foundation refits, pier and beam, brick foundation upgrades, foundation wall repair, basement repair, foundation crack repair, floor leveling, residential house bolting where they are an approved vendor of CEA-California Earthquake Authority, EBB- Earthquake Brace and Bolt State Grant Program, Home Depot Pro.

Release ID: 292167